The Bible on How To Live

Sarah Bowman
Sarah Bowman, I’ve read the Bible, still read it, and also secular stuff.

How about reading it for yourself? It’s online for free in many different languages at Bible Gateway. The reason I can’t tell you what it says about how to live is that over the thousands of years of its existence people (mostly Jews and Christians but also Muslims) have taken seriously pretty much every word and verse that’s in it and applied it meaningfully to their lives in some way or other.

Muslims may have the Quran but major parts of it are taken almost verbatim from the Christian Bible, and Jews may use the Old Testament part. Today, these three groups of humanity still adhere to various parts of the Bible. Yet within themselves each group subdivides many times because of differences of opinion on exactly what the Bible means, and which parts are meaningful.

For example, some people make much of the verses of the Bible that condemn homosexuality but disregard the verses that condemn judgmentalism. Others disregard the verses about homosexuality but make much of the verses about love, mercy and tolerance for all.

Another example: Some adhere unflinchingly (and will suffer imprisonment if necessary) to Jesus command to put up the sword and the commandment not to kill, while others adhere just as unflinchingly to the injunction to obey the government; they will both kill and put their lives on the line in military or police duty in obedience to the government. Both are written in the Christian Bible on how one should live.

As a Secular Humanist, who am I to tell anyone which parts of the Bible a person should follow? I believe:

  1. People can do whatever they like so long as they don’t hurt self or others.
  2. One person’s rights end where another’s begin.

I hope you can figure out how to live your life so that you have peace with yourself.


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